Gear Manufacturer Finds Savings

March 8, 2011
Forest City Gear Inc., in Roscoe, Ill. has more than 100 computer numeric control (CNC) machine tools manufacturing gears (some of which are on Mars on the rover). 

The company actually exports to China. As part of its sustainability and competitiveness programs, the company installed a bank of power conditioners to service the electrical requirements of the machines, which saved 20 percent on the electric bill.

Other sustainable initiatives include:

  • Changed lighting system from T-12 to T-8 using 25, 28, and 32 watt lamps. 
  • Tinted windows with low-Emissivity film 
  • Replaced several heating/air-conditioning units with highenergy efficient units 
  • Installed programmable thermostats throughout the building
  • Replaced less efficient air compressors with larger more efficient units 
  • Installed Oberland oil filtrate/cooling unit for gear grinding,using outside air for chilling the oil any time ambient air temperature is 50 F or below
  • Turn off lights during lunch period
  • Turn on/off lights as required for bathrooms, lunch room, conference room and warehouse 
  • On weekends and major shutdowns, adjust heat/air to minimum needed 
  • Regularly check for compressed air leaks 
  • Implemented and follow the principles of Lean Manufacturing
  • Spin oil out of chips to recycle 
  • Reuse most all received packaging dunnage, except for Styrofoam
  • peanuts, which are recycled locally
  • Eliminated bottled waterservice for drinking and now used filtered tapwater

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